Coevolving Innovations

… in Business Organizations and Information Technologies

Systems Changes Dialogues on Social Innovation | Centre for Social Innovation | 2024-03-18

Having reached year 6 of an espoused 10-year journey, the Systems Changes Learning Circle is (again) convening monthly Dialogues on Social Innovation at the Centre for Social Innovation in Toronto.

Starting up in 2019, the Circle was convening regularly in the Climate Ventures space at 192 Spadina Avenue. The pandemic interrupted in-person meetings, and the core group continued philoosophical and theoretical development.

A return to normalcy encourages the Circle to serve as mentors on thinking through systems echanges.

As an introduction, an online Lunch and Learn was scheduled. Dialogues can be free-flowing, with a light guidance along three questions:

  • 1. Which differences make a difference in your social innovation? Which rhythms are normal, and which are shifts?
  • 2. What influences advance or block the rhythmic shifts of your social innovation?
  • 3. Where can the pacing of systems changes, as faster or slower, favour your social innovation?

To better describe these questions, very short (5-minute) presentations were provided as orientation.

A. Welcome :05
B. Rhythms: Normal or Shift? Presentation One :05
Dialogue One :10
C. Influences: Advancing or Bocking? Presentation Two :05
Dialogue Two :10
D.Pacing that favours: Faster or Slower? Presentation Three :05
Dialogue Three :10
E. Next Meeting (poll)
Better Questions?

With only an hour scheduled for the Lunch and Learn session, participants only got a brief taste of the way a dialogue would run.

Brief animations served as metaphors on which dialogues could be built. Oriented towards an audience of practitioners, the presentation defers more rigourous theoretical explanations into later mentoring.

This recording of the presentation segments (all within 15 minutes) is available on Youtube , as well as on the Internet Archive .

Video H.264 MP4
March 18
(HD 2255kbps 277MB)
[on the Internet Archive]

A standalone audio track was extracted from the video recording.

March 18
[on the Internet Archive]

The embedded movies make a slide preview on the web more of a challenge.  The ODF, PDF and surrogate Google Slides versions are posted over on the Coevolving Commons.

The circle is looking forward to welcoming more practitioners thinking through the systems changes associated with their social innovations.

Here is the original abstract sent in advance.


Is your social innovation work responding to systems changes… or is it leading to systems changes? Join us for a discussion on how the timing of changes can work for, rather than against, our social impact work. In our next Lunch and Learn, CSI Members David Ing and Kelly Okamura will introduce us to new ways of thinking about organizational systems, paying particular attention to the rhythms, texture, and pacing that make a difference

David and Kelly will also address:

  • 1. Which differences make a difference in your social innovation? Which rhythms are normal, and which are shifts?
  • 2. What influences advance or block the rhythmic shifts of your social innovation?
  • 3. Where can the pacing of systems changes, as faster or slower, favour your social innovation?

About Systems Changes Learning Circle:

The Systems Changes Dialogues on Social Innovation are mentored by members of the Systems Changes Learning Circle. The Circle was founded at CSI and OCADU in 2019, on a 10-year journey towards rethinking systems. The mentors are David Ing, Dan Eng, Kelly Okamura and Jenya Nee. There will be a monthly peer-to-peer mutual learning group at CSI, with the first meeting convening in-person at 192 Spadina on Wednesday, March 20 at 4:00pm. A poll on online vs. in-person meetings will determine future scheduling.

Systems Changes Dialogues on Social Innovation


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • RSS (Mastodon)

  • RSS on IngBrief

    • The Nature and Application of the Daodejing | Ames and Hall (2003)
      Ames and Hall (2003) provide some tips for those studyng the DaoDeJing.
    • Diachronic, diachrony
      Finding proper words to express system(s) change(s) can be a challenge. One alternative could be diachrony. The Oxford English dictionary provides two definitions for diachronic, the first one most generally related to time. (The second is linguistic method) diachronic ADJECTIVE Oxford English Dictionary, s.v. “diachronic (adj.), sense 1,” July 2023, For completeness, prochronic relates “to […]
    • Introduction, “Systems Thinking: Selected Readings, volume 2”, edited by F. E. Emery (1981)
      The selection of readings in the “Introduction” to Systems Thinking: Selected Readings, volume 2, Penguin (1981), edited by Fred E. Emery, reflects a turn from 1969 when a general systems theory was more fully entertained, towards an urgency towards changes in the world that were present in 1981. Systems thinking was again emphasized in contrast […]
    • Introduction, “Systems Thinking: Selected Readings”, edited by F. E. Emery (1969)
      In reviewing the original introduction for Systems Thinking: Selected Readings in the 1969 Penguin paperback, there’s a few threads that I only recognize, many years later. The tables of contents (disambiguating various editions) were previously listed as 1969, 1981 Emery, System Thinking: Selected Readings. — begin paste — Introduction In the selection of papers for this […]
    • Concerns with the way systems thinking is used in evaluation | Michael C. Jackson, OBE | 2023-02-27
      In a recording of the debate between Michael Quinn Patton and Michael C. Jackson on “Systems Concepts in Evaluation”, Patton referenced four concepts published in the “Principles for effective use of systems thinking in evaluation” (2018) by the Systems in Evaluation Topical Interest Group (SETIG) of the American Evaluation Society. The four concepts are: (i) […]
    • Quality Criteria for Action Research | Herr, Anderson (2015)
      How might the quality of an action research initiative be evaluated? — begin paste — We have linked our five validity criteria (outcome, process, democratic, catalytic, and dialogic) to the goals of action research. Most traditions of action research agree on the following goals: (a) the generation of new knowledge, (b) the achievement of action-oriented […]
  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • RSS on

    • 2024/06 Moments June 2024
      Summer jazz at the Distillery District, in Washington DC while at the annual systems conference, and then Toronto Jazz Festival
    • 2024/05 Moments May 2024
      Busy May with art university graduate exhibition, travel to UK seeing Edinburgh, Hull, Manchester, London, returning home for wedding in Lefroy, annual cemetery visits with family, and spending time with extended family in from Chicago.
    • 2024/04 Moments April 2024
      Return from visiting family in Vancouver BC, clan events and eldercare appointments
    • 2024/03 Moments March 2024
      More work than play for first part of month, in anticipation of trip to Vancouver to visit family.
    • 2024/02 Moments February 2024
      Chinese New Year celebrations, both public and family, extended over two weekends, due to busy social schedules.
    • 2024/01 Moments January 2024
      Hibernated with work for most of January, with more activity towards the end of month with warmer termperatures.
  • RSS on Media Queue

    • What to Do When It’s Too Late | David L. Hawk | 2024
      David L. Hawk (American management theorist, architect, and systems scientist) has been hosting a weekly television show broadcast on Bold Brave Tv from the New York area on Wednesdays 6pm ET, remotely from his home in Iowa. Live, callers can join…Read more ›
    • 2021/06/17 Keekok Lee | Philosophy of Chinese Medicine 2
      Following the first day lecture on Philosophy of Chinese Medicine 1 for the Global University for Sustainability, Keekok Lee continued on a second day on some topics: * Anatomy as structure; physiology as function (and process); * Process ontology, and thing ontology; * Qi ju as qi-in-concentrating mode, and qi san as qi-in-dissipsating mode; and […]
    • 2021/06/16 Keekok Lee | Philosophy of Chinese Medicine 1
      The philosophy of science underlying Classical Chinese Medicine, in this lecture by Keekok Lee, provides insights into ways in which systems change may be approached, in a process ontology in contrast to the thing ontology underlying Western BioMedicine. Read more ›
    • 2021/02/02 To Understand This Era, You Need to Think in Systems | Zeynep Tufekci with Ezra Klein | New York Times
      In conversation, @zeynep with @ezraklein reveal authentic #SystemsThinking in (i) appreciating that “science” is constructed by human collectives, (ii) the west orients towards individual outcomes rather than population levels; and (iii) there’s an over-emphasis on problems of the moment, and…Read more ›
    • 2019/04/09 Art as a discipline of inquiry | Tim Ingold (web video)
      In the question-answer period after the lecture, #TimIngold proposes art as a discipline of inquiry, rather than ethnography. This refers to his thinking On Human Correspondence. — begin paste — [75m26s question] I am curious to know what art, or…Read more ›
    • 2019/10/16 | “Bubbles, Golden Ages, and Tech Revolutions” | Carlota Perez
      How might our society show value for the long term, over the short term? Could we think about taxation over time, asks @carlotaprzperez in an interview: 92% for 1 day; 80% within 1 month; 50%-60% tax for 1 year; zero tax for 10 years.Read more ›
  • Meta

  • Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
    Theme modified from DevDmBootstrap4 by Danny Machal